Friday, January 31, 2014

The Salad that Has Kept Me Quit

My friend Mark quit smoking recently and I’ve been super proud of him. I’m not sure if this will work for him, but I wanted to share it. I have been eating some variation of this salad almost every day since I quit smoking over 2 years ago, and I’m inclined to think it has helped me stay quit. I usually eat it after my meals (the European way) and that after-dinner craving I used to have pretty much dissipated. Considering that's the strongest urge of the day, I think there's something to it.
     Of course, I also took up yoga early on and then running and working out a bit (and craft beer for the kick) to keep my days happy and smoke-free, but I know that when I was smoking I always craved citrus – it just never tasted good. Now I think I can appreciate the flavor and this feels like one of the healthiest parts of my day. I’ve also heard that seeds, especially pumpkin and sesame seeds, are deterrent for nicotine. So here’s to staying quit. I hope it helps. Cheers, Mark, and everyone else trying to take better care of their lungs.

GreenFruit Suppression

Chopped greens (romaine and/or red + baby spinach is great)
¼ cucumber, partially pared (the peel is good for you, I take off one or two sides for texture, then slice)
¼ avocado, sliced
½ ruby red grapefruit, skinned and sectioned into bite size pieces
2 tbsp. fresh red beets, skinned and chopped fine
1 tbsp. fresh carrots, chopped fine
1 tbsp. shredded white cheese (mozzarella and/or provolone + italian is nice)
about 1 tbsp. pumpkin seeds
Red wine vinegar


So my salad is all about layering. Prep everything first except the avocado. Mix greens and cucumber and lay in serving bowl. Slice avocado over the greens in an even layer. Then add the grapefruit. (The citrus softens the avocado and gives the salad texture. You can actually get away with not using dressing it all, if you do it this way). Add the rest of the ingredients, also in even layers and sprinkle generously with pumpkin seeds. Dress with red wine vinegar. Raspberry vinaigrette also works well.  Variations help keep the salad an interesting part of your daily diet.

Variation (optional add-ons)
Craisins (flavored ok) or golden raisins
Green pepper, chopped
Chopped turkey deli meat or chicken breast (cooked, obviously)
Unsalted sesame seeds
Top with fresh sliced strawberries! Oh yum.

1 comment:

forker girl said...

Look very tasty, think I'll try it Francine (Thylias will try this soon). Glad that you quit smoking; cigarettes killed my father, and rubber dust from his career. The combination was toxic: COPD; he smoked a couple of packs of Pall Malls daily.